The Demi-Plane of the Void - Also known as the Void. History: the daonn and dwearh understanding of magic is mostly a result of their enslavement by the elemental lords. While traditional magic-users exist (those who "learn spells" and recite incantations), they are often seen more as hacks or charlatans of the science world. True magickcraft comes from the understanding of what binds everything together across the multiverse. Aetherists study the reliable, repeatable effects of magic as a physicist would study gravity or quantum-mechanics. (in terms of the real world, if a wizard is a computer "gamer", an aetherist is the system programmer / game designer) As this knowledge grew, fantastic technology wasn't the only thing that emerged. The aetherists quickly came to understand that another outer plane was on its way towards them and would soon become Resident within the Inner Planes - no doubt shattering any semblance of structure and normalcy they had fought so hard to attain. Working together, the daonn and dwearh created the Void - a demi-plane that surrounds the planet of Baennor and, theoretically, will prevent or at least inhibit breaches between the Inner Plane and Baegherix - the plane of Everlasting Desolation. Unexpected Benefits - While this "shield" was purposefully built to be a demi-plane unto itself, what was unexpected was that the Void was also an excellent repository for information and communication. Acting almost as an echo of reality, a memory, a spoken word, an inscribed tome could be retained within the Void seemingly indefinitely. What first appeared to be a cacophony of madness from the Prime soon turned into a web of information and study by those who understood its unforeseen utility. This incredible boon has propelled the collective knowledge of the Commonwealth forward tenfold over just the last fifty years. Aethertech exists today that was never dreamed of just 20 years ago due to a new, fundamental understanding of magic in the multiverse. Other Inhabitants of the Void - Most aetherists do not physically travel to the Void, but it is technically possible. People have described a trip into the aether as if wearing the wrong prescription spectacles for too long - nothing is as it appears, distances are distorted, and after a time dizziness and headaches wrack those who stay to long. However, there are instances of other-planar creatures who have taken up residence in the Void. Only single individuals and most not for long, but they do exist. Birth of the Dwimmersmith - The uses of this new understanding of magic were nearly endless. Aetherists were the practitioners of how to use magic in new and exciting ways, but the engineers behind what to use these new techniques for are commonly referred to as Dwimmersmiths. If an Aetherist develops a new theory on how philogiston could be used to enhance the speed of an aeroship, a Dwimmersmith would put that knowledge to practical use, creating a faster forge engine that capitalized on this new study. Aetheric Constructs - Aetherists and Dwimmersmiths have a unique ability to interact with the void and craft specialized constructs from the material there. Aetherists craft Sprites and Daemons, while Dwimmersmiths construct Orbs and Aedolons. Sprites are used by aetherists to communicate with others, find information, and study the world around them. Daemons are used for larger, magical tasks. In many ways, daemons represent the spells of a common spellcaster, but they tend to be more flexible in their application than the casting of a fireball or invisibility spell. Orbs are Dwimmersmith constructs used almost as sensors and wards. An orb may be used to observe an area for a short time, act as a door lock, or simply serve as a light source. By contrast, Aedolons are powerful constructs used primarily to inhabit other objects. Cogs, an artificial life form in the Commonwealth, is a prime example of the use of an aedolon. Other uses include the control nodes on an aeroship, or the security weave in a building. Slates - The most common way to glean information from the Void is to utilize a portal device. These devices can be huge, taking up entire walls, but today most people who are capable of aethersight, view the Void through a small, handheld device called a Slate. There are many manufacturers of slates, but almost all of them are in Rynmark. These devices almost appear to be a decorative picture frame, complete with transparent glass. However, when activated and viewed by someone with "the sight", it becomes an overlay on the world around them - a window into the Void in their immediate area. Those searching for clues that may have been imprinted on the Void, can find them with these devices. Those attempting to communicate with others can send messages using this portal. Those wanting information can conjure (or create) a sprite to find it for them. It is a person's portal into the aether plane. Spektors (speck-tors; short for Aspector or Aspect; slang: skippers or drifters) - There are individuals who have developed the specialized ability to send their metaphysical mind into the Void on their own. While rare, these individuals can leave their physical form and travel through the Void searching for information, looking for clues, protecting portals, and so forth. While out of their bodies, they are defenseless and rely on their mates or seclusion for protection. In the Void they can do anything an aetherist with a slate can do, only better.